Current Affairs Updates- 10th october 2017
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PepsiCo India Chairman and CEO D Shivakumar resigns
- PepsiCo India Chairman and CEO D Shivakumar has resigned, almost four years after taking over as head of the cola giant. Shivakumar had joined PepsiCo after having worked at Nokia, prior to which he was with Hindustan Unilever and Philips Consumer Electronics. Shivakumar will now join Aditya Birla Group as its Executive Vice-President (Corporate Strategy and Business Development).
Home decor startup MyGubbi raises 2.7 mn dollar in pre-Series A
- Bengaluru-based home decor and furnishings startup MyGubbi has raised 2.7 million dollar in pre-Series A funding led by the family office of investor Firoze Irani. The round also saw participation from investors including BigBasket Co-founder Vipul Parekh, and Infosys President Rajesh Krishnamurthy. Founded in 2015, the e-commerce startup provides end-to-end home decor solutions to its customers.
- Varanasi's Tulsidas akhara has allowed girls to compete in traditional wrestling, breaking a 450-year-old tradition of not admitting girls. The akhara, which is run by the Sankat Mochan temple trust, will hold fights featuring women from Diwali this year. This comes after two girls, Nandini Sarkar and Aastha Verma, took almost a decade to convince the trust to allow them.
Vachan Prerna Divas’ on Oct 15: ‘Promote book reading on Dr Kalam’s birth anniversary’
- On the occasion of former president Dr APJ Abdul Kalam’s birth anniversary, October 15, the state government has urged all the schools, colleges and offices to observe ‘Vachan Prerna Divas’ (Inspire to Read Day). Claiming that technology and gadgets have almost taken over the habit of reading, the government has urged educational institutions to develop ideas and programmes to, once again, cultivate the habit of reading among youngsters.
- World Post day happens each year on October 9, This date is the anniversary of the Universal Postal Union(UPU), which started in 1874 in Switzerland. The UPU was the start of the global communications revolution; People could write to others all over the world. World Post Day started in 1969 at the UPU. Congress in Tokyo. Since then, countries all over the world take part in celebrations to highlight the importance of our postal service.
- India started to celebrate Air Force day on 8th of October in the year 1932 as an auxiliary air force of Indian Empire.
- The Indian Air Force, air arm of the Indian armed forces, has its prime responsibility of securing the Indian airspace as well as to carry out the aerial warfare during any clash.
New Appointments: National
PNB MetLife appoints Ashish Kumar Srivastava as MD and CEO
- PNB MetLife, who is working on its IPO plans, today announced the appointment of Ashish Kumar Srivastava as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer.
- Ashish joined PNBBSE 0.11 % MetLife in 2013 as the Head of Human Resources before subsequently moving to Dubai in 2015 to take charge of Human Resources for the MetLife Middle East and Africa (MEA) region. Prior to joining PNB MetLife, Ashish served as Director on the board of HSBC Canara Oriental Life Insurance Company.
- President Ram Nath Kovind has appointed Justice Humchadakatte Gopalaiah Ramesh as the new Acting Chief Justice of the Karnataka High Court. He will assume charge from October 10 after the current Chief Justice Subhro Kamal Mukherjee retires on October 9. Notably, Justice Ramesh, the senior-most judge of Karnataka High Court, has been serving as a High Court judge since 2003.
RBI to soon launch financial literacy drive in 9 states-Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Odisha, Karnataka, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh
- The Reserve Bank will soon launch a financial literacy drive in 80 blocks in nine states on pilot basis to educate people on e-transactions, formal sector borrowings and insurance purchases.
- Six NGOs registered with the Depositor Education and Awareness Fund -- CRISIL Foundation, Dhan Foundation, Swadhaar Fin Access, Indian School of Micro Finance for Women (ISMW), Samarpit and the PACE Foundation -- have been selected to execute the pilot project in collaboration with banks.
- The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has mandated e-commerce firms to settle seller payments within two days from the date of intimation of completion of transaction. This comes after All India Online Vendors Association (AIOVA) filed a complaint in August alleging e-commerce firms delayed payments to sellers. Currently, majority of those companies reportedly take 7-15 days to settle the payments.
- Private lender Kotak Mahindra Bank on Monday crossed 2 trillion in market capitalisation for the first time, after its stock surged to an all-time high. This makes it the fourth listed bank and 21st company to achieve this mark in India. HDFC Bank is the most valued bank in India with a market capitalisation of 4.66 trillion.
Growth to be above 7% in next two quarters: RBI Governor
- RBI Governor Urjit Patel has said that India's economic growth will pick up in the third and fourth quarters to above 7%. He said, "We need to take into account the transitory effects relating to GST," adding, "We have started seeing the upturn." He said inflation target should be achieved without losing sight of supporting economic growth.
JSA become the first law firm in GIFT city
- J Sagar Associates (JSA) is the first law firm to have opened an office at Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT), which is being promoted like Singapore of India.
- Setting up this office would help JSA consolidate their Financial Services Practice, according to the firm release. The office was inaugurated by Sudhir Mankad - Chairman of GIFT IFSC, along with CEO Ajay Pandey.
- Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) have become a growing threat to global health. A recent study done to assess the diet and nutritional status of India’s urban population has pointed out that the increase in incidence of NCDs can be attributed to a change in food habits, sedentary behaviour and unhealthy lifestyles, among other risk factors.
Panel set up to review GST composition scheme
- A Group of Ministers (GoM) has been set up under Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma to make the composition scheme more attractive and revisit GST rates on restaurants.
- The GST Council had on Friday constituted the GoM, which will submit its report in two weeks.
- Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Sunday announced that his government will be providing financial assistance of 2 lakh to widows who want to remarry. Singh also listed several measures that will be implemented by his government, including policies to ensure that daughters get their share in parental property.
- Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla said the Centre would keep revising the tax slabs under GST. He added, "People's comfort is our priority and we will decide according to that." The GST Council on Friday raised the threshold limit for Composition Scheme to 1 crore allowing small businesses to pay 1-5% tax without going through formalities.
- The dress allowance given to diplomats and Special Protection Group (SPG) officers, responsible for the security of the Prime Minister, former PMs, and their families, has been hiked on the recommendation of the Seventh Central Pay Commission. The SPG officers would get 27,800 annually during operational duties and 21,225 annually on non-operational work as against the current 9,000/annum.
- Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekaran has said the group will consider buying Air India and that it's looking at its disinvestment process. The group, however, needs more details from the government on the process, Chandrasekaran said. He said the group can't remain with a fleet of just over a dozen planes, referring to Vistara airline in alliance with Singapore Airlines.
- The railway administration recently asked the Government Railway Police and the Railway Police Force to evict unauthorised hawkers from various stations and foot overbridges in Mumbai to ease commuter movement. The move comes after 23 people were killed in a stampede at Elphinstone Road station last month. Interestingly, the officials were also asked to click photos of hawkers for identification.
- The Supreme Court on Monday upheld its ban on sale of firecrackers in Delhi-National Capital Region till November 1, saying it wants to test the ban's effect on Delhi's air quality. The Central Pollution Control Board also supported the plea seeking restoration of the previous-year ban as the region witnessed a huge rise in air pollution after Diwali last year.
- The Delhi government's Women and Child Development department recently issued warning to its employees saying action will be taken against those reaching office after 9:45 AM. Noting the official reporting time is 9:30 AM, the department said one casual leave will be deducted on every three "late comings". The order further said officials will have to submit explanations for coming late.
- India is heading for yet another record coffee crop in the year 2017-18 starting October 1 on increase in the bearing area under the bean crop. State-run Coffee Board, which released the post-blossom or the initial estimates on Tuesday, has placed the 2017-18 crop at 3.5 lakh tonnes (lt) — an increase of 12.31 per cent over 2016-17’s final output of 3.12 lt.
- The Chhattisgarh government has banned the use of chlorinated plastic and short-life Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) in the state.
- The recent decision taken by the Chhattisgarh government comes as a relief for the environment. It may not solve the problem but it is bound to do its bit as the chemical used to make PVC is a known human carcinogen, according to the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).
- Several activities will be organised in the district as part of Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao campaign of the Ministry of Women and Child Development as an awareness week will be observed under this campaign in the country from October 9 to 14.
- The Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, addressed the India Energy Forum by CERAWeeK in New Delhi today.
Temasek's venture capital arm Vertex raises 210 million dollar
- Singapore-based venture fund Temasek Holdings's venture capital arm Vertex on Monday announced that it has raised 210 million dollar in funding. Vertex plans to invest the fund in Southeast Asian and Indian startups across enterprise technology, financial technology and consumer internet. Vertex's previous two funds for Southeast Asia were fully funded by Temasek Holdings.
- The US mission in Turkey and subsequently the Turkish mission in the US have indefinitely suspended all non-immigrant visa services for travel between the two countries over security reasons. This comes after a US consulate employee was arrested in Turkey last week on suspicion of links to Fethullah Gulen, a cleric Turkey blames for a failed coup in 2016.
- A 3,000-km-long solar car race, dubbed World Solar Challenge, across Australia began on Sunday, featuring 42 cars in three classes. The teams in the event, which was first organised in 1987, are allowed to drive between 8am and 5pm every day. Notably, Google co-founder Larry Page and Tesla co-founder JB Straubel have participated in the challenge in the past.
- The US state of California has adopted a 'sanctuary state' law that extends protections for illegal immigrants. The first-of-its-kind law prohibits police from cooperating with federal immigration authorities. "The bill will protect those families who are now living in fear every day," California Governor Jerry Brown said referring to the Donald Trump government's crackdown on illegal immigrants.
Science & Technologies
17-year-old Pakistani kid shows how electric honeycomb forms
- Muhammad Shaheer Niazi, a 17-year-old Pakistani kid, has provided the first photographic evidence of ion movement that forms an electric honeycomb. The phenomenon occurs when an oil layer placed in an electric field between a flat and pointy electrodes forms a honeycomb-like pattern. The Lahore high school student did the research for the International Young Physicists' Tournament.
- NASA’s odyssey orbiter - the longest-lived mission to Mars - has taken the first look at Phobos, and produced a colour-coded image revealing surface temperatures of the Martian moon considered to be a potential future human-mission outpost.
Defence & Railway
SpaceX successfully launches 14th Falcon 9 rocket in 2017
- Elon Musk-led space exploration startup SpaceX on Monday successfully launched its 14th Falcon 9 rocket in 2017 from California. The rocket which carried 10 satellites to orbit for American communications company Iridium, has also returned to its floating drone ship in the Pacific Ocean. The launch marked SpaceX's third mission for Iridium.
- Railway Minister Piyush Goyal reportedly objected to the "unpleasant peculiar smell" caused by phenolic type disinfectant fluid, prompting the railway board to change the deodoriser-cum-disinfectant in railway offices and trains. In a recent circular, the Railway Board said it has decided that all fresh procurement of disinfectant should have essential oils like pine and lemongrass.
- Under the BJP-led NDA's three-year rule, the Indian Railways laid tracks 11.5% faster than under the Congress-led UPA-II government, an RTI response has revealed. The Railways has laid 7,666 kilometres of tracks during NDA's rule, 794 kilometres more than the tracks laid under the UPA regime between 2009-2012. Railways laid down tracks 13% more than its target under the NDA.
- The railway ministry has asked its senior staff to slug it out – at home and at work – as part of steps to end the VIP culture in India’s national transporter. In an unprecedented move, the ministry has brought to an end a 36-year-old protocol where it was mandatory for general managers to present themselves on arrival and departure of the Railway Board chairman and other board members during zonal visits.
Application / Portal
India's first portal thenationspride.com dedicated to para-sports launched
- In a bid to create awareness about para-sports and provide a platform to para sportspersons to narrate their stories of triumph and adversity,thenationspride.com, the country's first portal dedicated to para-sports was launched here today.
Schemes / Programme
Projects worth Rs 700 crore sanctioned for Namami Gange programme
- The National Mission for Clean Ganga has approved eight projects worth over Rs 700 crore in the northern belt of the country to take forward the ambitious Namami Gange programme, an official statement said.
- Out of the eight projects, four of them relate to sewage management in three Ganga basin states, it said.
President launches Mata Amritanandamayi Math Project Jeevamritham in Kerala
- President Ram Nath Kovind has said, the Nation requires more people who use their knowledge for the betterment of the nation and society. He was speaking at an event in Amrithapuri in Kollam in Kerala. President launched 100 crore rupees Mata Amritanandamayi Math Project “Jeevamritham “to provide filtration system for cleaning drinking water to 5000 villages across India, in kollam district in kerala today.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi today laid the foundation stone for the Rs 4,337-crore Bhadbhut Barrage project here which aims to stop the ingress of salinity along the Narmada river.
- Modi, on the second day of his two-day visit to poll- bound Gujarat, also flagged off a new train between Udhna in Surat and Jaynagar in Bihar.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi today launched an intensive immunisation drive from Gujarat's Vadnagar, saying no child should suffer from any vaccine- preventable disease.
- Through the 'Intensified Mission Indradhanush' or IMI, the government aims to reach every child below the age of two years and pregnant women still uncovered under the routine immunisation programme, an official statement said.
Awards & Honours
Richard H Thaler wins 2017 Nobel prize in economics
- American economist Richard H Thaler, who was awarded 2017 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences, had supported Indian government's demonetisation decision. He had on November 8, 2016, tweeted, "This is a policy I have long supported. First step toward cashless and good start on reducing corruption." He has been awarded the Nobel Prize for "his contributions to behavioural economics".
Sports: Awards & Honours
China Open: Nadal beats Kyrgios to take sixth title of the season
- World number one Rafael Nadal beat Nick Kyrgios 6-2 6-1 in the China Open final to win his sixth title of the season.
- Australian Kyrgios began well but lost his way after he became frustrated by a line call in the first set in Beijing.
- The temperamental world number 19 continued to let the incident bother him and later received a one-point penalty for continuing to complain.
- French and US Open winner Nadal won nine games in a row on his way to reclaiming the trophy he won in 2005.
- Englishman Tyrrell Hatton became the first man to retain the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship title as he won by three shots after a six-under-par final round at St. Andrews on Sunday.
- Anupama Ramachandran of India and Dylan Emery of Wales have claimed the World Open Under-16 Snooker Championship titles in the girls and boys category, respectively, in St. Petersburg Russia.
- Australian wicketkeeper Peter Nevill claimed eight dismissals in his team New South Wales' List A match against Cricket Australia on Sunday, equalling world record for most dismissals in a one-day game. Nevill took six catches and effected two stumpings in the match, joining English keepers Derek Taylor, James Pipe and South Africa's Steve Palframan in claiming 8 dismissals.
- Simona Halep became Romania's first impending world number one tennis player only to lose the China Open title to France's Caroline Garcia a day after claiming the ranking. This was the unseeded French player's second successive title after her Wuhan Open victory. "I was like, seriously, this really happened?" Garcia said following her win over the world number one
- American mixed martial artist Demetrious Johnson defended his flyweight title for the 11th consecutive time at UFC 216 on Saturday, surpassing the defence record he shared with longtime middleweight champion Anderson Silva. Johnson, who stopped his opponent Ray Borg by armbar submission in the fifth round to achieve the feat, landed 172 total strikes as compared to Borg's 22.
Noted journalist Bismoy Kumar Mohanty passes away at 62
- Noted journalist Bismoy Kumar Mohanty died on Sunday following a heart attack at Puri, family sources said. Mohanty was 62 and is survived by wife, a son and a daughter. Sources said Mohanty, who had gone to the seaside pilgrim town along with his wife, complained of chest pain this morning. He was taken to Puri hospital where doctors declared him dead.
Jewellery stocks jump after removal of PAN for purchases
- Gems and jewellery stocks jumped on Monday after the government removed dealers from the purview of the reporting requirement under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). PC Jeweller rose 6.4%, Titan Company rose 4.7% and TARA Jewels was trading 9% higher during intraday trade on Monday. PAN and Aadhaar details will not be mandatory for jewellery purchases above 50,000.